Difference Between Surrogate and Gestational Carrier

Surrogate vs Gestational Carrier

Breeding is one of the most important events for a life to sustain, but infertility and other inabilities to breed could be barriers for making children. Surrogacy is an arrangement that addresses the problems related to breeding inabilities, especially among humans. A woman carries a baby inside her, which has not been resulted through sexual intercourse. Based on the genetic relatedness between the mother and the baby, the traditional surrogate and gestational carrier could be identified. It should be stated that the traditional surrogate is referred as the surrogate in this article.


Surrogate, or the traditional surrogate, is the mother who is in direct genetic relationship with the baby. In this case, artificial insemination should take place with a sperm of the father either via in-vitro fertilization (IVF), intrauterine insemination (IUI), intracervical insemination (ICI), or home insemination. When the male is infertile or the female is single, use of surrogacy becomes vital for breeding. Additionally, the surrogate can become pregnant through a sperm of a donor. Therefore, the surrogate is always the genetic mother of the child, but the father can be either genetically related or not with the baby. It becomes clear that the surrogate is vital to overcome certain inabilities in breeding, yet it still offers the luxury of the baby being genetically related with the parents or at least with the mother.

Gestational Carrier

Gestational carrier, aka gestational surrogate, is the mother who carries a developing foetus, which has been resulted from an in-vitro fertilization of an ovum of another woman with a sperm of the father. In simple terms, the gestational carrier keeps the developing foetus until the birth, and she is not genetically related with the child. The developed embryo through the IVF technology is transferred to the uterus via reproductive tract of the gestational carrier, and the foetal development takes place thereafter.

The service of a gestational carrier becomes important when the intended mother is unable to carry a developing foetus. The inability of the intended mother could be due to any reason such as diabetes, the womb being removed (hysterectomy) etc. Therefore, the gestational carrier is not genetically related with the child in any case. The gestational surrogacy is important to overcome the reproductive problems associated with both the mother and father.

Surrogate vs Gestational Carrier

• Surrogate (traditional) is always genetically related with the child, but gestational carrier is not. Additionally, either both parents or mother is genetically related with the child in traditional surrogacy, whereas the gestational carrier temporarily keeps a foetus of another.

• Surrogate is important to overcome the main infertility problems of the father while gestational carrier is vital to defeat the breeding problems associated with both father and mother.

• Surrogate can be pregnant through many ways, whereas the gestational carrier becomes pregnant via IVF only.